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I camped as close to the area I wanted to hunt as possible, but I was still about 90 minutes from where most of the deer had showed up in the last few days.  That meant 90 minutes of riding a horse in subzero temps.  Riding a walking horse is a pretty sedentary activity.  About every 20 minutes, I’d have to dismount and walk to warm up.  Once in the deer country, I’d tie the horse and hike, so staying warm wasn’t as tough; that is until I sat down to glass!  What I’m getting at is that while hunting in these conditions can be great, you’re always in survival mode.

Today dawned cold and clear- perfect conditions for some Extreme Long Range Glassing (I wrote an entire chapter on this subject in my book).  Time for the big Vortex 15×56 Kaibab HD Tripod Binoculars along side my old favorite, the Swarovski CT 75 (I take a lot of ribbing on that scope but I still crown it the best spotter for the backcountry hunter.)

 Don’t wait too long to get entered. Good luck and thanks for following.


Read all about the research, gear, and techniques I use in my new book, Hunting Big Mule Deer, How to Take the Best Buck of Your Life


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Robby Denning
Robby Denning started hunting mule deer in the late 1970’s, only missing one season in 35 years. At 25, he gave up the pursuit of all other big-game to focus on taking the best bucks possible. He began hunting the West on a DIY budget hunting an average of 30 days a year for mule deer. Robby loves the hunt as much as the kill and the entire process from research to scouting to hunting. He’s killed four bucks over 200 inches in the last 15 seasons, mostly on easily-obtained tags. He owns a public-land scouting service and runs a private-land outfitting business helping other hunters in their pursuit of deer and elk. Robby has scouted and hunted literally thousands of square miles of mule deer country and brings a wealth of knowledge about these experiences with him. To him, the weapon of choice is just a means-to-an-end and will hunt with bow, rifle, or muzzleloader – whatever it takes to create an opportunity to take a great mule deer. He is also the author of "Hunting Big Mule Deer" available on Amazon. Robby believes all of creation is from God for man to manage, respect, and through which to know its Creator


  1. HE HE! I love that feeling of closing the gap and see if it is the one. Hope your are not breathing too heavy to squeeze the trigger. LOL

  2. Robby, thanks for letting us live vicariously through you! I love these videos and look forward to watching a new one every day. God bless!


  3. Looks like this about to go down! Curious what unit you are hunting? I assume you drew this hunt and the archery was a general OTC hunt? Get Him!

  4. Way to stick with it Robby. i hope that you stay safe and warm and are able to get a great buck. i really like following the blog.

  5. Robby, another question, what are your thoughts on the new rifle so far? I ask because, it’s expensive, light, and accurate. But the same qualities can be found for example in a tikka t3 out of the box for about $700. Add a Manners stock for $600 or so and you’re still cheaper and at least as light as the CA, and just as accurate. I am just curious if you think the CA has a leg up somewhere against the example I’ve provided?

  6. Matt, super question. Like I ended the article in part 2: “if you think ounce counting in backpacking is expensive, try building a backcountry rifle!” If you check the blog post just above this one, you’ll hear exactly what my thoughts are on the rifle in the video now that I’ve killed with it (and packed it over 22 days this fall). Your Tikka idea will accomplish much of what the CA has out of the box. However, you’ll have a shorter barrel at 24″ (the CA has a 26″ barrel and hits 6lbs 2 oz) while the Tikka only has a 24″ barrel but is 6lbs 5 ozs in 270 WSM (from what I can gather in the few minutes I had to check). The CA carbon handles heat better (but hey, how many shots we really gonna shoot at a buck?) and is more accurate, although I know Tikkas can be very accurate too. I didn’t post it in the article, but my gun shot a 0.25″ group at the factory! Finally, looks. I’ve been around a bunch of Tikkas and no one will convince me they’re pretty. But hey, I get it and concur that you can get a lot of gun for a lot less money with your suggestion. We’re splitting hairs if we argue it. And if it weren’t for Rokslide’s association with CA as a sponsor, no way could I afford to shoot this CA and I might be shopping Tikkas too. Only buy the best you can afford then never look back. You’ll be happy. Hope that helps.

  7. Thanks for the reply Robby, exactly what I was looking for! I don’t own a Tikka, and you’re right, to me they aren’t really much to look at. While that shouldn’t be a big factor in making a hunting rifle decision, I have to be honest when I say I need accuracy AND good looks. I’ve shot a .270 for a long time, and I love that rifle, but you really have me thinking about these! Really enjoyed the blog and congrats on the big buck! Also listened to the latest podcast on they way in to work today and yesterday, good stuff. Coming down from Alaska every fall to either MT or WY, I have my work cut out for me chasing big bucks. Really only have about 8-10 good hunting days in which to get it done. I think the info in your book and these podcasts will help me be more successful. Thanks!

  8. You bet Matt. 8-10 days is enough especially if you give it a few years. If you’re already a 270 fan, you’ll love the 270 WSM. I really believe 3200 fps is attainable in an accurate load- I just ran out of time before I go there. All the best!

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